independence

  • The Political Myth of Margaret Thatcher in Scotland

    The article describes and explains the phenomenon of the political myth of Margaret Thatcher – her anti–Scottish attitude and policies and its impact on the process of decomposition of the United Kingdom. The author indicates that the view of Margaret Thatcher’s dominance in Scotland is simplified, stripped of complexity, ignoring significant information conflicting with the thesis, but that also plays an important role in current politics, legitimizing secessionist demands and strengthening the identity of the Scottish community. In the contemporary Scottish debate with its unequivocal defence policy of Thatcher is outside of the discourse, proving its sanctity status. Thatcher could see this special Scottish dimension within the United Kingdom, but treated it rather as a delay in the reforms needed in the country. There are many counterarguments to the validity of the Thatcher myth. Firstly, many negative processes that took place in the 80s were not initiated by Thatcher, only accelerated. Secondly, the Tory decline in popularity in the north began before the leadership of Thatcher and has lasted long after her dismissal. The Conservative Party was permanently seen in Scotland as openly English. Thirdly, there is a lot of accuracy in the opinion that the real division is not between Scotland and England, only between southern England and the rest of the country. Widespread opinion that Thatcher was hostile to Scotland is to a large extent untruthful. She has never retreated radically from any of the Scottish privileges, such as the Barnett formula or the Scottish Development Agency. 

  • SCOTL AND AT THE CROSSROADS: FROM BREXIT TO NEVERRENDUM

    This article aims to describe the possible variants of the course of events after Brexit, from a Scottish perspective. Three dimensions are taken into the account: future model of UK–EU relations, symmetry of Brexit inside the UK and possibility of the second independence referendum in the near future (less than five years). These dimension have allowed to distinguish three main variants of further development, that are in short named by the author as: passive variant, Scottish exception and another referendum. It seems at this point that the Scottish Government is bound to carry out the second referendum, especially if the British government chooses a variant of the so-called hard Brexit. The European argument, which is so often used by Sturgeon in political debate does not necessarily lead to an increase in support for the independence, especially when eventual membership in the European Union of an independent Scotland is burdened with so many question marks.

  • Ombudsman Institutions and the Judiciary in Sweden and Finland

    The short article discusses the competences of ombudsmen in Sweden and Finland in relation to the judiciary. These institutions have controlling and supervisory powers in relation to courts of law, including the determination of the accountability of judges and typical competences of a prosecutor. The Author points out the necessity to read provisions of the constitutions and acts regulating the discussed competences in the light of the principle of the judiciary’s independence. Still, the supervisory rights of ombudsmen in Sweden and Finland are very well developed and may refer to issues approaching closely the sphere of jurisdiction. When assessing the solutions presented, the Author points out the fact that the ombudsmen in both countries have worked out respective practices aimed at such use of available means of control so they cannot be accused of a reasonable and too extended interference with the judiciary sphere.

  • The Legality of the Catalan Independence Referendums

    During the last decade the separatist activities of the Catalan nationalists have intensified. Despite the enactment of the Statute of Autonomy in 2006, extending the existing autonomy of the Autonomous Community, Catalonia’s governing political parties strived for total independence. In view of the consistent attitude of the central government in Madrid refusing any concessions on the extension of autonomy or independence, the Autonomous Government of Catalonia (Generalitat) appealed to the institutions of direct democracy, calling twice for a Catalan referendum on independence. In both cases, the Spanish Constitutional Court declared the referendum unlawful. In spite of this, Catalonia declared independence after the referendum of October 1st, 2017, although the effects of the declaration were also suspended – a situation so far unknown to law.

  • Statehood Without the State: The Politico-Legal Visions of the Future State of Tibet

    The main purpose of this article is to analyze the situation of modern Tibet, which political and legal structures are divided into the Central Tibetan Administration in India and the Tibet Autonomous Region in China. What connects them is a developing national identity of the Tibetans and the actions taken by the Central Tibetan Administration to create a new and independent state. Of great importance for the specificity of politics and the shaping of Tibetan national identity are also activities of the 14th Dalai Lama, who internationally promotes Tibetan culture and informs about the situation of Tibetans living in the Tibet Autonomous Region in China.
    Dalai Lama is also the author of the draft constitution of the future state of Tibet, which content is a basis of the analysis in this article. Due to the comprehensive presentation and explanation of the specifics of this project, we will analyze not only particular articles, but also the introduction that we can consider as preamble. Thanks to this, it will be possible to show the relationship between political, legal and religious issues that make up the visions of the new state of Tibet.
    This article is divided into two related parts. The first one is connected with national identity and independence of Tibet. The second part is focused on democratization of Tibet and relation between religion and politics.

  • Evolution of supervision over the activities of local self-government in Poland

    The legal order of contemporary democratic states consists of a supervisory institution which cannot be used for political purposes or used in a discretionary manner. Poland, returning to the maps of Europe in 1918, was a country in which territorial self-government functioned, differing in many aspects from the model we encounter today. The differences concerned, among others supervision, which also played an important role in the activities of local government units in the Second Republic of Poland. The purpose of this article will be to show the evolution of supervision over territorial self-government in Poland.

  • The Securitisation of Kurdish Self-Determination as A Challenge for the Sectarian Balance of Power in the Middle East

    The article addresses current questions concerning the Kurdish situation before and after the invasion and expansion of ISIS. It applied the theory of securitisation to study the tangled circumstances and frameworks of Kurdish claims, underlining their attempts at gaining their much-desired independence. This elaboration enables one to recognise the genesis and the local, regional and global context of international actions vis-à-vis Kurdish interests, and the possible supporters and opponents of the Kurdish project of statehood in the Middle East. It portrays also the current perception of Kurdish efforts to establish their own national and legal subjectivity that must be recognised by the majority of state actors in order to meet the indispensable criteria of international law.
    This article is particularly important in the context of recent developments in the Middle East. First of all, it refers to pressures, as well as openly offensive actions targeting the interests and territories controlled by the Kurds in Turkey during the existence of the so-called Islamic State. Secondly, it reflects on actors’ reactions in the international arena, including the countries of the Middle East, towards the independence referendum in Iraqi Kurdistan, as well as on direct actions aimed at shaping a new geopolitical order after the fall of ISIS (attack by Iraqi troops in Kirkuk or the Turkish army in Afrin).

  • Perspectives for Kosovo’s Accession to the EU

    Kosovo, the smallest country in Europe, over 10 years after declaring its independence, still remains outside of the European Union. As one of the countries of former Yugoslavia, it benefitted from the process of European integration, yet compared to neighbouring Western Balkan countries it is at an early stage of stabilisation and association process. The paper points to the main problems that Kosovo is facing, both at the internal and external level, in the face of the accession process and future membership in the European Union.

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